richard m. nixon and the democratic candidate senator john f. kennedy >> reporter: they began just 52 years ago on september 26, 1960. >> i think mr. nixon is an effective leader of his party. i hope he would grant me the same >> schieffer: some people who listened to it on the radio thought that nixon won but it was generally conceded that people who watched it on television were pretty convinced that jack kennedy won >> absolutely. what you say is important. but what you look like can be also as important >> mr. nixon, would you like to comment on that statement >> i have no comment and in nixon's case, he percent spired. he had the audacity to per spire. as a consequence, the venue where you are where a debate goes on, it's like a meat locker. that's the reason. they negotiate how cold it's going to be because nobody wants to per spire because look what happened to nixon. it's amazing. >> schieffer: even a great communicator like franklin roosevelt knew the risk of debating. he was a heavy favorite to win re-election in 1940, so when republican wendell wilke demanded a debate, f.d.